Plant Breeding Minor

Minimum 15 credits in Plant Sciences (PLSCI prefix) coursework.

The Minor Program of Study in Plant Breeding provides a basic understanding of crop improvement, a historical perspective of the discipline, and a sense of how plant breeding contributes to modern society’s demands for food, fiber, fuel, and environmental sustainability.  A minor in plant breeding can complement most any major in the life sciences.

Advisor: Mark Sorrells
413 Bradfield Hall
mes12 [at] (mes12[at]cornell[dot]edu)


Required Courses

  • PLSCI 2250 - Plant Genetics (Spring, 4 credits)
  • PLSCI 4030 - Genetic Improvement of Crop Plants (Fall, 3 credits)

Elective Courses

At least five credits from the list below:

  • PLSCI 3430 - Molecular Biology and Genetic Engineering of Plants (Spring, 2 credits)
  • PLSCI 4540 - Plant Cell Biology (Fall, 4 credits)
  • PLSCI 4620 - Plant Biochemistry (Spring, 3 credits)
  • PLSCI 4070 - Nutritional Quality Improvement of Food Crops (Fall, 2 credits)
  • PLSCI 4080 - Methods of Plant Breeding Laboratory (Fall, 2 credits)
  • PLSCI 3010 - Biology and Management of Plant Diseases (Fall, 4 credits)

Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  1. Describe the cellular and organismal processes of plants and relate those processes to evolution, diversity and ecology.
  2. Convey to professional and lay audiences, orally and in writing, information about the breadth of issues in plant sciences.
  3. Work with plants in field and laboratory and follow and use experimental protocols.
  4. Express scientific questions as testable hypotheses based on a synthesis of current understanding and resources.
  5. Debate the biological and ethical consequences of future advances in plant science - especially in the areas of genetic engineering, biofuels, and climate change.
  6. Describe the impact that plant sciences have on self, community, and global health and well-being.

To learn more about these courses,  visit the Courses of Study website.

How to Apply

Visit the Plant Science undergraduate minors webpage for more information about how to apply for this and related minors.